Pierce, King counties require masks for all at large outdoor gatherings starting Sept. 7

Health officials announced that Pierce County will join King County in requiring masks for large outdoor gatherings starting Tuesday, Sept. 7.

The countywide health order requires everyone age 5 and older to wear a face-covering at any outdoor event of 500 or more people regardless of vaccination status.

"We are taking this step to ensure the most vulnerable people in our community do not become infected or spread COVID-19," said Dr. Anthony L-T Chen, director for Tacoma-Pierce County Public Health. "The highly contagious Delta variant is causing a rapid increase of positive COVID-19 cases and leading to increased hospitalizations and deaths.

RELATED: Proof of vaccination required to enter restaurants, bars in Clallam and Jefferson counties

Health officials also urged the public to wear a mask in any crowded outdoor setting effective immediately as COVID-19 cases surge.

"Wearing masks in crowds of 500 or more will reduce community transmission and protect children under the age of 12, people who are immunocompromised and unvaccinated adults," said Dr. Chen.

The Washington State Fair in Puyallup, which opened Friday, previously announced that it would require face-coverings be worn both indoors and outdoors.

RELATED: Washington State Fair opens with new health, face mask protocols

Read the health order below:

King County

King County announced earlier this week that it is reinstating outdoor mask mandates for large events and strongly encouraging people to wear masks in other outdoor settings when they can’t remain 6 feet apart.

RELATED: King County reinstating outdoor mask mandate due to surge in COVID cases

In a statement, Public Health – Seattle & King County said as of Sept. 7 there will be a requirement for facemasks for outdoor events of 500 or more people. This directive also applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated people age 5 and older.

Gov. Jay Inslee issued a universal mask mandate in August for all indoor public spaces in Washington state.


Stay connected with Q13 News on all platforms:

DOWNLOAD: Q13 News and Weather Apps
WATCH: Q13 News Live
DAILY BRIEF: Sign Up For Our Newsletter
FOLLOW: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The Associated Press contributed to this report.